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Babergh district councillors given more time to consider name change

Babergh district councillors are being given more time to consider a proposal to change the name of the council.

The council was due to meet later this month to discuss a proposal to change the name of Babergh District Council to South Suffolk Council, making the council geographically consistent with its neighbouring authorities in the county.

But in a joint briefing today, leader Cllr John Ward and deputy leader Cllr Clive Arthey told councillors that the meeting scheduled for October 22 would not take place, to allow time for further discussions.

Cllr John Ward is elected as new Babergh District Council leader. (19292632)
Cllr John Ward is elected as new Babergh District Council leader. (19292632)

This means any name change is now unlikely before April 2021.

Cllr Arthey said: “We recognise there’s a lot to consider and want to provide more time for all councillors to fully consider the potential benefits, implications and costs before meeting to reach any decision.”

Part of the rationale for the proposed name change was to help raise awareness and investment in the area – with people from further afield unaware of where Babergh is and what it has to offer.

Cllr Ward said: “We have received valuable feedback both for and against the proposals over recent weeks that will help in our future discussions. We are extremely grateful for the free publicity we have received in the meantime, both nationally and internationally, that has helped people to understand exactly where Babergh is located and how to pronounce it.”

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